essay1 - Max Haubold Essay 1 Part IV- Dobie 3/17/2011...

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Max Haubold Essay 1 Part IV- Dobie 3/17/2011 Business and the Effects The most significant theme in Out of This Furnace by Thomas Bell is the influence of business and industry on the common worker. While written as fiction, Out of This Furnace accurately portrays what many immigrant workers and their descendants underwent during the late 19 th and early 20 th centuries in relation to employment and living conditions. Following John Joseph (Dobie) Dobrejcak through the 1920's and 1930's, Out of This Furnace Part IV shows how worker life becomes closely intertwined with business strategy throughout the Great Depression era. The rise of collective bargaining, new technologies, and the rise of consumerism all contribute to the increasingly complex relationship between American business and the American worker, proving their interdependence. The story of Dobie provides examples of how the growth and development of collective bargaining begins to add complexity to the traditional transaction-based theology of employee- employer relations. Prior to the 1920's, the common worker would sell his/her labor to the business at the market price, much like any other good. Due to the abundance of labor, the companies were able to take advantage of the working class very easily. They treated the employees as numbers on a roster, to be replaced if any problems arose. During the late 1920's, this began to change with the emergence of collective bargaining. Another element was added to the classic transactional employment model, as employees became motivated for this collective action. Companies began to employ “company unions” in attempt to head off any real progress by the working class to raise wages or change working conditions. According to Dobie, the Employee Representation Plan “was a joke” and “its purpose
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This note was uploaded on 11/18/2011 for the course MNGT 364 taught by Professor Staff during the Fall '08 term at UNC.

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essay1 - Max Haubold Essay 1 Part IV- Dobie 3/17/2011...

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